The Vert Top 10 of 2013

Whitefish Mountain Resort Vert Records

A hearty congratulations to your All-Time Vert Single-Season Leader, Tony Cooper.

Here are your Overall Top 10 of 2012-13.

Vert Top 10 2012-13

Topping the list, with your newly created All-Time Single-Season Record, Tony Cooper bombed his way to 5,612,746 vertical feet.  Tony skied as quickly and efficiently as one could possibly ski, skiing day after day in the 55,000-60,000 feet range down the stretch.   He turned in multiple 70,000+ feet days, working the night-skiing opportunities to full advantage.   Tony skied fast and wasn’t appreciably slowed down by adverse ski conditions.  He averaged 47,972 feet per day, over the 117 days he skied.  He devised and executed a strategy that gave him a chance.  And he stayed healthy enough to keep pushing and get it done.  It took a monumental and determined effort for Tony to set the new mark.  The record is now yours.  Enjoy it~!

Fred Frost continued his remarkable run of 10 consecutive Overall Top 3 finishes, with a 10th Place All-Time season himself, at 4,343,300′.   This year gives him a whopping 41,135,472 vertical feet over the last decade.   He is unquestionably the King of the Mountain for the decade.   There’s no question in my mind, this total is in the Top 3 worldwide over the past 10 years.  I’d love for the editors at one of the Ski Magazines to take a stab at determining if anybody else has skied more.

Your’s truly had my 6th consecutive Top 3 finish.   And while this was only my 3rd best season total, it was easily my best year skiing the Big Mountain.  Less total vert, more quality skiing.   That seems to be the progression and trend I’m working on.  This year, I also notched my first season of skiing every day—all 121 days.  Rick Sawyer and Russ Carpenter, I don’t know how you do it, year-in and year-out.

John Gibson topped 3 million feet again, doing it around working full-time and traveling all over the place.   He gets more done, with more constraints, than anybody else in the Top 10.  And he still rides with more skill and grace than I do, especially in tight-treed spaces. Sorry to slow you down in Connie’s at 4:00.  I’m working on being quicker about it.  Next year, you can show me Area 51 and Gate 6.

Russ Carpenter surged his way into another Top 5 performance with another impressive March and April.  Ten years straight in the Top 10.  And amazingly to me, Russ doesn’t ever miss a day.  Not to my knowledge, over any of the years since I moved here in 2006, has he ever missed a day.

Albin Kwolek is a newcomer to our Top 10.  Welcome.  He skied the 53rd highest season total ever skied on the Big Mountain.  Not too bad a way to break in.

Kay Yobst was your Ladies Number 1 and overall number 7.   She skied a personal best 2,712,322 vertical feet, earning her 4th Ladies Title and 4th Overall Top 10. And she did it skiing all over the place.  Thanks for showing me the left side of Haskill’s and Back-Door to Evan’s.   Seems like a fair exchange for the Picture Chutes and “Space” routes that I shared with you and Steve.  Next year, its Chicken Nuggets, with no huck(s) required.

Tom McCrea rejoined the Top 10 after a one year hiatus.   Welcome Back.  One of these years, I’m bound to meet you and will learn to recognize you.

Steve Calger is again back in the Top 10, for his 4th time.  Steve also set a personal best at 2,663,000′ in 103 days.  Nicely done.  We’ve come along way over the last few years–learning our way around this Big Mountain.  And we’ve done it the old-fashioned way–one run at a time, without anybody guiding us into the “gnar.”  Just poking our way a little left and right of the main routes, and voila, we’ve got “Space” figured out.  Thanks for sharing the powder stashes.  It’s a bigger mountain now for each of us.  Next year, we branch out further.

Finally, a hearty welcome to Mark Panicek–my fellow Army Veteran, and retired Coast Guard Officer, and fellow student of one each Andy Pollard, Ski Instructor Extraordinaire. Mark is earning his chops and made his first Overall Top 10.  He is putting in the mileage, “looking the enemy in the eye,” getting it done.   Time on skis, coupled with applying the sound science that Andy is imparting, are the keys to significant skill gains.  That’s certainly been true for me.  Good on you for working diligently at your craft~! And thank you for your service~!  On behalf of the Top 10 Club Veterans, welcome to the club.

That’s your Top 10 for 2012-13.   Who’s in for next season?

Cheers JDPF

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